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Home > Author > Heather Burles
Heather Burles

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Member Since: May, 2011

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  Heather Burles

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At the age of thirty-seven I bought a one-way ticket to Damascus.

Background Information

At the age of thirty-seven I left my job as a computer programmer and bought a one-way ticket to Syria. In Smouldering Incense, Hammered Brass (Turnstone Press) I describe my experiences travelling the countryside, renting a small house in Damascus, learning to speak Arabic, meeting people, and avoiding trouble. I became an honoured guest at a Bedouin feast, the victim of a deliberate "accident" orchestrated by a police officer, and I spent an afternoon with a mukhabarat agent (the dreaded secret police). Struggling with the Arabic language and other adventures, I experienced countless moments of joyous wonder at the generosity and hospitality of the Syrian people.

I love travelling and I love reading travel memoirs. I am currently working on a novel set in ... Canada.

Birth Place
Pincher Creek,  Canada

First Place, Non-Fiction, Surrey Writers’ Conference Writing Contest, 1998.
Festival Writing Competition, Federation of British Columbia Writers, 1996.
Most Accomplished Speaker Award, MacDonald Dettwiler Toastmasters, 1993.
Natural Science and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) Postgraduate Scholarship, 1987-88.
Prince of Wales Prize, Queen’s University, 1985. Awarded to the student with the highest academic standing on the B.A.(Honours) List.
Medal in Language and Linguistics, Queen’s University, 1985.

Favorite Links

Smouldering Incense, Hammered Brass
A Syrian Interlude

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